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Rated: 18+ · Short Story · Fantasy · #2231236
A young apprentice makes an error.
'Ware Your Words!

Simon was uneasy. He could hear some murmuring. He stepped outside and it got louder. Because of excellent hearing, he was able to follow it.

He was a quiet man with a slow, nearly silent walk, so he was able to move toward the sound. It seemed to be coming from the sacred trees near the small temple.

As he came to the edge of the blessed grove, he recognized the voice.

“That boy sounds like he’s courting trouble!” the priest told himself.

When the teacher broke from the trees, he was sure the chanting would stop. It didn’t. It was clear Umbert was caught up in what he was reading aloud and had not noticed anything else.

The priest was appalled when he realized what he was doing. He hurried forward to snatch the scroll from the boy’s hands.

“You don’t know what you are saying!”

Startled, young Umbert stared at him.

“I was just reading aloud!”

“But this is something you should never, ever read aloud!” Simon told him.

“Where did you get this?” the priest asked more quietly.

“I was browsing in the temple library and came upon it. You did say I could read anything I liked from there, didn’t you?” the boy asked anxiously.

“You can, but never read something unfamiliar aloud,” Simon cautioned.

“Why not?”

“Because some words have more power when spoken aloud.”

“How will I know?”

“Years of study and guidance from your teachers, especially me!”

The boy looked chastened and Simon softened.

“It was an honest mistake, don’t let it happen again!”

Simon gave the boy some transcribing as penance and sent him away.

“Now, to see if I can fix things!” he muttered.

There was a blast of hot wind that nearly swept him away.

“Too late!”

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